Home Practice & Makers 3D printing filament: YouTuber introduces real-time dryer

3D printing filament: YouTuber introduces real-time dryer

The YouTube channel “3D Printing Ideas” has presented a method for drying filaments. The method promises to solve problems with damp material directly during the printing process.

The background to the problem is the hygroscopicity of many 3D printing filaments. They absorb moisture from the air, which can lead to undesirable effects such as bubble formation and loss of quality during printing. Previous solutions such as special filament dryers or ovens often require hours of preparation time and dry the entire material at once.

The new approach is similar to the principle of continuous flow heaters. The filament is passed through a small chamber with a heating element and fan. The length of the chamber and the printing speed are crucial in order to give the material enough time to “sweat out” the moisture. The temperature in the chamber must remain below the glass transition point of the filament in order to avoid deformation.

So far, the method has only been tested with TPU filament, but shows promising results. The advantages of this method are obvious: it enables on-demand drying directly before printing, saves time and prevents already dried material from absorbing moisture again. It could also be particularly useful for users in humid climates or when processing highly hygroscopic materials.

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